Last week in South Gate, California, Beatriz Paez was out for a walk when she saw a group of US marshals arresting a group of bikers on the sidewalk. She pulled out her cellphone to record the incident. Paez told The Los Angeles Times that once the marshals became aware of her smartphone they tried to block her view, then one of them stormed up the block, snatched the phone out of her hands, threw it to the ground, and then kicked it for good measure.
There’s video of the incident, filmed by another woman across the street. If you turn the volume up you can hear Paez saying, “You are making me feel unsafe, and I have a right to be here” and “You need to stay away from me, I don’t feel safe with you closer to me.”
“There is no situation in which an officer can intentionally grab and destroy a camera being used to lawfully record law enforcement,” said Hector Villagra, executive director of the American Civil Liberties Union of Southern California, told the Times. “The officer’s conduct is a blatant and deliberate violation of the Constitution and his duties as an officer to abide by the law.”
The US Marshal’s office told the LA Times that the incident is under review.
Image via screengrab.
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